I know our trip is off to a good start when Ryan’s fascinated with something as simple as a Japanese bidet and the Hyatt Regency gives us a warm welcome!
Day 2: Thursday, October 11, 2012
A lot can be accomplished when you wake up at 5am thanks to jetlag. Shinjuku may be better known for its nightlife, but that doesn’t mean we had a shortage of things to do during the day. Home to the world’s busiest railway station, Shinjuku had department stores lined up next to one another with alleyways full of mega electronic stores to cozy booth-style restaurants. Ryan got his “Japanese” electronic — actually, a Jawbone Jambox (which probably came straight from home in San Francisco) — and I got my stationery to journal and collage all 52 days in Asia. As if our bulky cameras weren’t touristy enough, we stopped by McDonald’s, only to kickstart a goal of trying McD’s in every country. And just so you know, asking for a small soda would result in you being handed what we call, “the water cup” — an Asian small.
At night, we headed to Roppongi, Tokyo’s financial district and hub of expats, clubs, and bars. We checked out an art exhibit on the “Arab Express” (not very Japanese at all) in the Mori tower, before heading up to the observation deck for a view of the Tokyo skyline, defined by the Tokyo Tower. (We’ve since learned that Paris isn’t unique; every Asian city has its favorite tower, too — from the Taipei 101 to Shanghai’s Oriental Pearl to Seoul’s N Tower.)
Afterward, we walked a mile through the concrete jungle to the Intercontinental Hotel for the best (and most expensive) teppanyaki of my life! Akasaka was located on the 37th floor, with another view of the Tokyo Tower — a grand backdrop for our chef and her fancy flames.
When jetlag and food coma compound one another, that’s what you look like.